It’s that time of year again. Cheat sheets are being printed, sleepers are being identified and no real work is actually getting done in your office. That’s right, its fantasy football draft time.
More specifically, its fantasy football auction draft time. If you haven’t had the pleasure of participating in an auction draft I implore you to go to your league mates right now and demand that they switch. Not only it is much more fun, everyone can be involved in any player they want, the action is fast and furious, but it is also much fairer. Gone are the days of draft order determining your league champion.
The single most important aspect of any auction draft is budget. I have been doing auction drafts for over 10 years now and without fail I see so many people without a real budget. Sure they have a general idea of what they want to spend but when those big names start coming out and their eyes get big they end up discarding that budget and are stuck drafting $1 players at the end in order to field a team.
I am going to give you the tools that you need to dominate your next auction draft. It is crucial that you know exactly how much money you have left for each player or position group. This is an extremely fluid proposition that takes skill and dedication during the draft but it will allow you to realize that you can in fact afford that steal of a deal in the middle of the draft instead of just guessing.
I have included a template that I use at all my auction drafts. This allows me to know, down to the dollar, how much I have left to spend and also what spots I still need. The key is at the bottom the row that says extra money. This is where you will kept a running total of how far above or below your budget you are. This is critical and tells you when you can jump on that deal or if you need to wait it out until the prices come down. After you win a player update that row.
Say your budget for Quarterback was $20 and you get Tony Romo for only $16, scratch out our QB-1 spot and put a +$4 in that first extra box. You now know that you have an extra $4 to play with. Now when you see Greg Olson about to close for $8 and your budget was only $5 you know you can get in and grab a top 3 tight end. Just don’t forget to update your extra money row after each player you win.
No matter what strategy you deploy, stars and scrubs, 2 stud running backs, 2 stud wide receivers, you are going to have to know how each decision and auction win affects the remaining spots on your team. Auctions can be fast and furious and it’s hard to be patient but by following these guidelines and using the budget tool below you will be the most prepared person in your draft and when it comes to auctions……the most prepared almost always has the best team in the end.
Good Luck and happy bidding.
*This is a guest post from Chad Valley.The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not always reflect the views of Let's Talk Fantasy Football.
This photo above is courtesy of and copyrighted by Thomas (49ers_in_London) via Flickr. This is used in accordance with Creative Commons laws, was not altered and all rights are reserved by Thomas (49ers_in_London).